GameSnacks are Google’s new HTML5 games designed for bad internet connections

Smartphones are becoming even more powerful gaming machines as time goes on, with the latest devices capable of pushing some incredible graphics on a pocket-sized device. But what if you’ve got an old or budget device that doesn’t have the huge amounts of processing power or RAM? Well, Google’s hoping the answer is GameSnacks — the latest project from its Area 120 incubator — a series of lightweight HTML5-based browser games that are meant to be easy to load and play on nearly any device.

According to Google’s announcement, GameSnacks games are designed to load “within a few seconds” even in network conditions as poor as 1Mbps (typical 3G speeds), and play smoothly with as little as 1GB of RAM. Since the games are entirely HTML5-based, they’ll work equally well in a web browser, on a tablet, or on a smartphone.

The GameSnack games themselves are short, simple affairs, including a skiing game, a Spy Hunter-esque shoot ‘em up, and a jewel-themed matching game that definitely isn’t Bejeweled. Are they the greatest games in the world? Probably not, but they’re free, they’re fast to load, and they’re probably good for a quick diversion in a pinch. And some of them, like the minimalist Tower, are interesting diversions that could have a life as an actual downloadable game in another world.

Whether Google continues to expand GameSnacks is unclear, but the company’s announcement post does mention a partnership with Gojek (a southeast Asian technology platform) and its GoGames app. Google’s post also makes a point of mentioning that the games lend themselves naturally to being embedded into an existing app, for quick games — or playable advertisements — that could be customized for a particular brand.